Film under fire for depicting triad as 'hero'

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 07 August, 1994, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 07 August, 1994, 12:00am

A FILM glorifying the life of murdered Sun Yee On triad Andely Chan Yiu-hing, the self-styled Tiger of Wan Chai, has come under fire from police and politicians.


The Tragic Fantasy - Tiger In Wan Chai is produced by the Regal Group film company owned by Steven Lo Kit-shing, who was drinking with Chan on the night he was killed last November.


Chan, nicknamed the Tiger of Wan Chai for his fiery temper, was gunned down by three men outside the New World Emperor Hotel in Macau.


It is believed to have been a revenge killing for Chan's supposed involvement in the murder in May last year of film producer Wong Long-wai.


Wong, in the Baptist Hospital after being beaten up by Chan, was subsequently shot dead by an unknown person. The two had fallen out after Wong allegedly slapped Canto-pop star Anita Mui Yim-fong when she refused to sing for him in a Kowloon karaoke bar. All these events are recreated in the movie.


The film will be released soon on the Modern Film Circuit. At a charity showing and cocktail party at Windsor Cinema in Causeway Bay to mark the movie's launch last Thursday, plain-clothes police mingled with guests in what they said was an intelligence-gathering exercise.


Other incidents in the movie include triad-run extortion rings against club and restaurant owners, Chan's fascination with fast cars and beautiful women, a protest by 100 triads at Wan Chai police station over the arrest of one of their leaders, and Chan's ignominious death and funeral, which turned into a media frenzy.


Chan's role is, ironically, played by Simon Yam Tat-wah, the brother of Peter Yam Tat-wing, senior staff officer of the Organised Crime and Triad Bureau. Chan Miu-ying, Chan's girlfriend in real life, plays his girlfriend in the film.


The movie has been classified as Category III, which means people under 18 are not allowed to see it.


Mr Lo denied the film was based on fact. ''It is only a story, none of it is based on fact; we just used his character as a reference,'' he said.


The producer also rejected criticism that the film would send a wrong message to audiences: ''They should be smart enough to distinguish a film story from true life,'' he said.


Mr Lo said he respected Chan. ''He was a friend of mine. He treated his friends very well,'' he said.


But he also admitted he capitalised on Chan's notoriety but added: ''I got the agreement of his family and we signed a contract.'' However, Simon Yam said the film was a true account of Chan's life.


''I never met Andely, but I got every detail about him from his close friends and girlfriends. So, I can say the film is a true story about him,'' he said.


''He's a real hero. He was commercially minded and knew how to do business . . . I think he's a great character.'' However, the police take a different view.


''The impression created by this glorified account will give a totally misleading picture of the real facts,'' said Chief Inspector David Lorimer of Wan Chai police, who arrested Chan for extortion shortly before his murder.


''Andely was only a car jockey, a parking attendant. He made a name for himself through being a loud-mouthed bully . . . Andely was nothing more than a small and unpleasant gang leader.'' Legislator Cheung Man-kwong said he was concerned by the film's release.


''We cannot ban it, but one way to counter its effect would be to produce more educative films,'' he said.